Hide My Face is the French duo Dalhia first EP. Released on October 30, 2020, it is available in digital and CD formats.
“Huge!” I exclaimed to myself as soon as the first track ended. I always take notes when I listen to music for the first time with El Garaje. Here, I could not because I was so overwhelmed by those sounds I had never heard before. The least we can say is that for a first EP, Rachel Geffroy (vocals) and Simon Vouland (drums/machine) have set the bar at a very high level. If at first glance, the press note that Dalhia submitted to us surprised us, the qualities of writing and the inventiveness of the duo quickly got the best of our doubts. It must be said that it’s not every day that a band combines hip-hop, dark electro, post-punk, a hint of indus, coldwave and many other sounds that we love at El Garaje. A real furnace, an alchemist’s melting pot where all these influences melt to perfection to form a hybrid genre.
Hide My Face deals with fundamental themes such as feminism, existential anguish, perversion and control. The tone is grinding. The dark and tortured music surprises, fascinates and irresistibly attracts the ear, title after title. For example, in “Your Bitch is my Target,” the tight intervals that predominate in the track create an exquisite tension over a throbbing bass. “Hide My Face” is probably the harshest track. While the song begins with a fairly static atmosphere, the brutal accompaniment that follows shatters it. It anchors into more darkwave sounds with a terrifying conclusion where Rachel is chanting and screaming. Violent music for a subject that is just as violent, an endless repetition illustrated by the resumption of the instrumentation at the beginning of the track. “Sublimation” is the most melodious track. There is vocoder. Yes, but this is different! We are very far from the abusive use of this tool in some purely commercial music, which shows a lack of taste, or even vocal skills. In “Sublimation,” the vocoder is not a mask, but a full-fledged instrument used judiciously to enhance the vocal line. “The death march” puts forward a duality between voice and rhythm for a most chilling rendering. “In Love with the Snow” is without a doubt the track that “sounds” the most hip-hop. A really interesting song with its little rhythmic games and interruptions.
After listening to Hide My face, it’s without any surprise that I discover that the duo has illustrated itself at the Printemps de Bourges. With such an amazing universe rich in heavy rhythms, in striking lyrics and in rough instrumentations, we only have to discover Dalhia in concert, something we look forward to.
Translation: Joanne Gagnon